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Cindy's Stand in Crawford
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Doing their best to demonstrate how "supporting the troops" isn't inconsistent with attacking the mother of a dead soldier who dares to speak out against the war in Iraq, the right, led by Matt Drudge and joined by many others, has been all over Cindy Sheehan for supposedly "changing her story on George Bush." Media Matters sets the matter straight. The truth is that Cindy Sheehan has been a frequent speaker at antiwar events across the country since her son Casey was killed in Iraq.
But so what if she hadn't? Polls show rather clearly that millions of Americans have changed their minds on the wisdom of the invasion of Iraq; surely Cindy Sheehan, or anyone else, has the right to be one of them. Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote "A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds," and the key word in that sentence is "foolish". There's nothing wrong with consistency of course; this blog maintains (I hope!) a consistent anti-imperialist, anti-capitalist position. But where consistency becomes "foolish" is when your previous position is contradicted by new evidence. Clear and convincing evidence that not only weren't there WMD in Iraq, but also that there never was any serious evidence that there were WMD in Iraq (cf the "Downing Street Memos", for example) is now in the hands of all Americans, and more than 2000 Americans and tens of thousands of others are dead, and tens or hundreds of thousands of people are seriously wounded, thanks to the invasion of Iraq. Surely any intelligent person has the right, and in fact the obligation, to weigh that new evidence and reconsider their position, even if they had been a gung-ho supporter of the war. Only in George Bush's America, with an intellectual lightweight (ok, a complete moron) named George Bush in charge, is clinging to a position in the face of contradictory evidence, whether it be the value of remaining in Iraq or the existence of global warming or dozens of other things, considered a virtue, something to be admired.
By Norman Solomon
Mid-August 2005 may be remembered as a moment in U.S. history when the president could no longer get away with the media trick of solemnly patting death on its head.
Unreality is a hallmark of media coverage for war. Yet -- most of all -- war is about death and suffering. War makers thrive on abstractions. Their media successes depend on evasion.
President Bush has tried to keep the loved ones of America's war dead at middle distance, bathed in soft fuzzy light: close enough to exploit for media purposes, distant enough to insulate the commander in chief's persona from the intrusion of wartime mourning in America.
GOOD MORNING AMERICA (07:00 AM ET) - ABC
Tuesday, August 9, 2005
(Off Camera) The mother of another Marine killed in Iraq is on a desperate mission this morning. Cindy Sheehan is demanding to speak to the president about her son, so she's camped outside Mr. Bush's ranch in Texas. ABC's John Yang joins us from there in Crawford, Texas this morning.
JOHN YANG, ABC NEWS
(Off Camera) Good morning, Robin. Cindy Sheehan has already been visited at her campsite here by two of the president's top aides, but she says that's not good enough.
CINDY SHEEHAN, SON DIED IN IRAQ
FOX ON THE RECORD WITH GRETA VAN SUSTEREN 10:48 PM EST
Tuesday, August 9, 2005
VAN SUSTEREN: Tonight, the mother of a fallen soldier is protesting the war in Iraq right in the president's front yard. Cindy Sheehan's son Casey was killed in Iraq last year. Now Cindy has camped out at President Bush's Crawford, Texas ranch and says she won't leave until the president speaks with her.
Cindy Sheehan joins us live on the phone. Cindy, first of all, I'm terribly sorry about your son. There obviously aren't words to express to you.
CINDY SHEEHAN, PROTESTING SON'S DEATH IN IRAQ (by telephone): Thank you so much, Greta.
The Early Show 7:00 AM EST CBS
Monday, August 8, 2005
JULIE CHEN, co-host:
President Bush may be on vacation in Crawford, Texas, but one mom wants to make sure he doesn't forget there is a war going in Iraq. CBS News correspondent Mark Knoller reports.
MARK KNOLLER reporting:
Just a few miles down Prairie Chapel Road from the Bush ranch, there's a makeshift campsite. It's occupied by a few anti-war protestors led by the grieving mother of a US soldier killed last year in Iraq, and she is demanding to speak with the president.
Ms. CINDY SHEEHAN (Gold Star Families for Peace): I'd ask him what noble cause did my son die for. And if he started saying freedom and democracy. I'd stop him. I'd say, `No, that's not why Congress gave you the power to invade Iraq.'
CONTACT: Ralph Nader 202-387-8034
WASHINGTON - August 10 -
Dear Ms. Sheehan,
From your grief over the loss of your son, Casey, in Iraq has come the courage to spotlight nationally the cowardly character trait of a President who refuses to meet with anyone or any group critical of his illegal, fabricated, deceptive war and occupation of that ravaged country. As a messianic militarist, Mr. Bush turned aside his own father's major advisers who warned him of the terroristic, political, and diplomatic perils to the United States from an invasion of Iraq. He refused to listen.
Thirteen organizations in early 2003 separately wrote their President
August 10, 2005
You are, in biblical terms, salt that has not lost its flavor or...its ability to catalyze! You certainly have catalyzed me.
Oddly, two things have kept rumbling through my mind this past week.
~ A poem by a Russian poet Nekrasov, “the poet of Russian pain.
By Sharon Wilson on Monday
Today in Crawford, TX with Cindy Sheehan
“Today is the beginning of the end of the occupation of Iraq
By William Rivers Pitt
t r u t h o u t | Perspective
Monday 08 August 2005
The man in black fled across the desert, and the gunslinger followed.
- Stephen King
George W. Bush hauled stakes for Texas and a vacation a few days ago. Cindy Sheehan followed. She got off a bus Saturday afternoon and started walking to the Crawford ranch. She wanted some answers and was going to get them.
Sheehan had met Mr. Bush once before. On April 4, 2004, just shy of a year after Bush stood on an aircraft carrier beneath a banner that read "Mission Accomplished," Cindy Sheehan's son, Army Specialist Casey A. Sheehan, was killed in Iraq when his unit was attacked by rocket-propelled grenades and small-arms fire. He was 24 years old.
By Karen Bradley
I just got this email from our DCP friend Kay, in Ohio, and I could not wait to get it to you!
Karen, I know you and Dick are on vacation, so I wanted to give a little more than five minutes for democracy this week. So I got me a pen and some paper and I made up my own little sign (Monkey would appreciate that) ... I went to the public square in Mansfield, county seat of Richland County, Ohio. I took along a chair and some flyers about Cindy Sheehan. I stopped along the way and bought a pink umbrella , some poster board, and a marker. I made the sign on the hood of my van in 90+ degree heat. That's my excuse for why the sign doesn't look so good. It says "Pres. Bush, Have you talked with Cindy Sheehan yet? democracycellproject.net"
After Speaking with Cindy Sheehan and Jodie Evans this morning I planned to post this update to meetwithcindy.org and spent the whole day (as the last three) trying to get a server to make the site work. Having now given up and linked from there to here for news, here's the news:
It rained last night: 4 inches. Cindy's got a fever. Everyone went back to town except Diane Wilson who held the fort.
A crew planned to come today, if the rain let up, and film a TV ad to run on local TV in Crawford.
More and more people are arriving to support Cindy, and she appreciates the support and asks for more.
A BUZZFLASH NEWS ALERT
Signers of Cindy Sheehan Letter
John Conyers, Jr.
Carolyn Cheeks Kilpatrick
August 10, 2005
Voiced by Robert Millman/Intuitive Productions
While others in Washington blanch at admitting that the Iraq War was a colossal blunder, Cindy Sheehan traveled to Crawford, Texas to tell George W. Bush that it was time to admit the error and end the bloodshed.
Sheehan knows the personal cost of the war, in a way George W. Bush has never known. Cindy's son was killed in action in Iraq last year. Everybody grieves in their own way, but Sheehan didn't want other parents to feel her pain of loss.
So she helped start "Gold Star Families for Peace," and she advocated loudly and visibly for accountability in the war on terror -- and an end to a misguided mission. Cindy says she knows from her travels that "people are fed up with this war and want to do something to stop it."
U.S. HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
August 8, 2005
SIGN-ON LETTER: Urge the President to Meet with the Parent of a Fallen Soldier!
DEADLINE: COB TUESDAY, AUGUST 9
Dear Democratic Colleague:
You probably have heard that since this past Saturday, Cindy Sheehan, the mother of Army Specialist Casey A. Sheehan who perished in Iraq on April 24, 2004, has been attempting to meet with the President in Crawford to discuss the loss of her son and the status of the war in Iraq.
Unfortunately, the President has refused to meet with her and, instead, sent two of his aides in his place.
Mon Aug 8th, 2005 at 12:50:41 PM EDT
I was alerted to Matt Drudge's latest smear campaign -- "PROTESTING SOLDIER MOM CHANGED STORY ON BUSH" -- this time against Cindy Sheehan, who's protesting the Iraq war and the deaths of soldiers, including her son, a few miles from Bush's Crawford, Texas ranch.
Raw Story did some digging and found out that Drudge pulled quotes out of context, and omitted large sections of the original story -- published on June 24, 2004 by The Reporter, a Vacaville, Calif. newspaper -- that expressed the Sheehan family's opposition to the war. The article isn't published on the Internet, but Raw Story acquired a verifiable copy of the original story.
DEMAND THAT BUSH MEET WITH CINDY!
Cindy Sheehan of Gold Star Families for Peace, is waiting for George Bush to come out of his Crawford,Texas vacation home to explain what is the "noble cause" her son died for! She has been holding a vigil outside the Bush ranch since Saturday, August 6,to demand an explanation now and to insist that the only way to honor the sacrifices of the veterans is to bring the troops home NOW!
Please join the Hip Hop Caucus, partnering with Clergy and Laity Concerned about Iraq, Code Pink, Progressive Democrats of America, United for Peace and Justice, UP (United Progressives) for Democracy, and other allies:
To: Texas PDA'ers!
From: Sherry Bohlen, PDA National Field Director
Date: August 8, 2005
I just spoke with Cindy Sheehan and she asked me to thank everyone for your support and encouragement. She looks forward to seeing many of you join her in Crawford but asked that I tell you that anyone coming on Thursday might be risking arrest.
The local authorities have informed her that as of Thursday she and anyone standing with her will be considered a national security risk and will be arrested. We're asking as many people as possible to arrive at the camp outside Bush's ranch on Wednesday evening and plan to spend the night camping with Cindy. In case the powers-that-be decide to arrest Cindy at 12:01 Thursday morning, we want to have a strong contingent of support for her!
Steve Cobble: Huffington Post
Cindy Sheehan is a one-woman antiwar movement.
Cindy wants to ask George W. Bush exactly what was the "noble cause" that her son Casey died for.
She's camping in a ditch near George W. Bush's fake ranch--built as a stage set when Bush ran for President, so he could pretend to be a cowboy, instead of an oil man--because more Americans like cowboys...
Cindy wants to ask Bush about the Downing Street Memo. Even though the elite media never really put it on the front page, Cindy knows that it proves that Bush & Blair had decided to go to war long before they told the rest of us, that the reasons they gave out to the public were false.
By Buddy Spell
LOUISIANA ACTIVIST NETWORK
August 8, 2005
The biggest recent development today is that Cindy’s lawyers, Annie and Buddy Spell of Franklinton, Louisiana, have associated Jim Herrington of the Texas Civil Rights Project to come in as local counsel. Jim successfully defended the Crawford Five and we are honored to work with him.
The legal team is now in place and will be on site in about 48 hours.
Rumors of an impending Thursday arrest remain just rumors at this time.
Spoke with Cindy at about 9:15 PM (CST) this evening. There are about a dozen people out at Camp Casey tonight.
United for Peace and Justice
We are united for peace and justice
But the price is rather high
Fighting a mission of questions
With the answers in the sky
World politics is a mystery
Logic is lost to a gun
Yet our soldiers are still heroes
Just like Cindy’s son.
We the people,
Stand tall, be brave
Bring our heroes home,
This is what we crave
We follow our leaders,
Hoping for the truth
Yet we jump into war
Without adequate proof
What can we do to stop the wars
What can we do for peace
So many living need our help
One of Sheehan's Lawyers has set up a blog to report from Camp Casey Annie Spell has started a blog, Peace in Pink Shoes, to document her trip to Crawford, Texas, begining tommorrow. The blog will provide some behind-the-scene observations and images not available elsewhere:
By Greg Moses
When Robert DeLozier saw the story of Cindy Sheehan on television Sunday, he told his spouse right away: 'I'm going up there. We have to drop everything and go.' At the Sam's Club of all places, says Robert, he nearly broke down crying while he was shopping Monday morning thinking about what Sheehan was doing in memory of her son Casey, who was killed in Iraq last April.
'She's a strong woman,' says Robert via cell phone as he drives back home Monday night. 'She feels she has been wronged. She feels her son has been wronged. And she feels like this whole occupation of Iraq is wrong. She is strong and powerful enough to take a stand. When I see it, it just strikes a chord. She's speaking truth to power. That's it. David and Goliath.'
By Juli Kearns (Idyllopus)
The following letter, circulating around the Hill, was acquired by RAW STORY Tuesday afternoon. Sixteen Democratic House members are calling on President Bush to meet Cindy Sheehan, whose son was killed in Iraq and is protesting outside Bush's Crawford ranch.
Dear Mr. President:
We write to respectfully urge you to meet with Cindy Sheehan and other relatives of fallen soldiers who request a meeting to discuss their deep concerns about the war in Iraq. We also request that you help ensure that Ms. Sheehan and her colleagues are not arrested as long as they continue to wait for a meeting with you at their location in the peaceable and legal manner that they have maintained thus far.
Progressive Democrats of America
Field and Political Report
August 9, 2005
Tell Bush to Meet with Cindy Sheehan
He must explain his rationale for sending American sons and daughters to risk their lives in Iraq. Cindy Sheehan, mother of Casey Sheehan, an American soldier killed in Iraq, is waiting outside of Bush’s ranch in Crawford, Texas for answers. She wants Bush to answer for the war that took her son, to explain the lack of weapons of mass destruction and explain the Downing Street Memos. Cindy has been a friend and ally to Progressive Democrats of America, speaking at our Iraq War Teach-In about the need to end this “immoral war.